G. Daniel Rath, M.D., Program Director
Dr. Rath graduated in 1985 from Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tennessee, and attended the Sioux Falls Family Medicine Residency Program in Sioux Falls from 1985-1988. In 2010, he completed a geriatrics fellowship at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, Nebraska. He was certified by the American Board of Family Medicine in 1988 and obtained a Certificate of Added Qualifications in geriatrics in 2010. Since August 2010, he has worked at the Sioux Falls Veterans Affairs Health Care System and attends for many of the fellowship’s activities at that institution. Some professional interests include geriatric medicine, family medicine, preventative medicine and psychiatric disorders. He's a past recipient of the Tracey Osborne Award in 2009 from the Nebraska Medical Directors Association. Dr. Rath lives in the country with his wife and four children. Some of his hobbies and interests include gardening, canoeing, developing his skills as an arborist and making music with friends and family.
Joseph Rees, D.O., Associate Program Director
Dr. Rees graduated from the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences College of Osteopathy in 2008. He completed a residency in Internal Medicine at the Sanford School of Medicine of the University of South Dakota in 2011. Following residency he started at Avera McKennan hospital in Sioux Falls as a hospitalist. He attended the Sanford School of Medicine of the University of South Dakota geriatrics program and completed in 2018. He transitioned from working full time as a hospitalist to geriatrics care in 2017, working with Avera eCARE and rounding in several Sioux Falls nursing homes. His current practice is split between rounding in the nursing homes locally, running a geriatric clinic in Sioux Falls and some telehealth in nursing homes. Professional interests include, geriatrics, transitions of care and quality. Personal hobbies include any sporting activity, especially volleyball and basketball. He also enjoys spending time with his wife and three children.
Oluma Bushen, M.D., C.M.D., Key Clinical Faculty
Dr. Bushen graduated in 1991 from the Jimma University Medical School in Ethiopia. He completed his internal medicine residency at USD Sanford School of Medicine from 1999-2002 and is board certified in internal medicine, infectious disease and geriatrics. He is also a certified medical director. He became a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha honor society in 2013 while a fellow in the USD geriatrics fellowship. Dr. Bushen has practiced internal medicine since 2002. He is the community living center and extended care and rehab staff physician at the Sioux Falls VA Health Care System. He is a member of the American Geriatrics Society, American Medical Directors Association Society for Post-Acute and Long Term Care Medicine and a board member of the South Dakota Medical Directors Association.
Kwabena Kwakye, M.D., Key Clinical Faculty
Dr. Kwakye graduated from medical school in 2009 from the School Of Medical Sciences in Ghana and completed his internship/internal medicine residency at the Harlem Medical Center in New York City in 2012. He completed his geriatric fellowship at The Sanford School of Medicine, University of South Dakota in 2017 and is currently board certified in both internal medicine and geriatric medicine. He joined the Avera Health System in 2012, where he continues to work as a geriatrician/hospitalist. He is actively involved in teaching internal medicine/family medicine residents and geriatric fellows. His professional and academic interests include addressing polypharmacy, advancing medical education and caring for the acutely ill older adult. Dr. Kwakye likes to spend time with his family, traveling to historic places of interest and watching soccer.
Fred Thanel, M.D., M.P.H., Key Clinical Faculty
Dr. Thanel graduated from Creighton University School of Medicine in 1975 and did his family practice residency at Creighton-St. Joseph's Hospital in Omaha, Nebraska. Dr. Thanel practiced for 13 years in rural Wyoming before joining the faculty at the University of Alabama, Birmingham. He completed an M.P.H. degree in epidemiology at the UAB School of Public Health in 1993, and joined the family medicine faculty in 1993. He became key clinical faculty for the geriatric fellowship in July 2010. He is medical director for Dow Rummel retirement complex, one of the fellowship's teaching sites. Besides geriatrics, his medical interests include rural health care issues, outpatient procedures, sonography, practice-based research and obstetrics. He serves as a national advisory faculty for Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics (ALSO). Dr. Thanel is married with three children. He and his wife and family enjoy canoeing, fishing, hunting, cross-country skiing, biking and anything else that can be done outdoors.
David Brechtelsbauer, M.D., C.M.D., Professor Emeritus
Dr. Brechtelsbauer graduated from the University of Michigan Medical School in 1973 and completed his family practice residency in Saginaw, Michigan. Dr. Brechtelsbauer practiced for nine years in rural Virginia before joining the Sioux Falls Family Medicine Residency faculty in 1985. Having completed a mini-fellowship in geriatrics at the University of North Carolina, he is a family medicine residency geriatrician, a key clinical faculty member for the geriatrics fellowship program and medical director at the Good Samaritan Center and Good Samaritan Luther Manor nursing homes in Sioux Falls. Dr. Brechtelsbauer was selected by his peers as the 2004 South Dakota Family Doctor of the Year. He was national president of the American Medical Directors Association (AMDA) from 2009-2010. His numerous teaching awards include: Edward J. Batt, M.D. Memorial Award as Outstanding Faculty Member 1995-96, Department of Family Medicine; Educator and Scholar Award, USD School of Medicine, Department of Family Medicine, 2003; James Pattee Excellence in Education Award presented by the American Medical Directors Association, 2005; and the Warren L. Jones M.D. Faculty Award, presented by the Sanford School of Medicine of the University of South Dakota, 2009. As editor of AMDA's publication, "Caring for the Ages," he authored the popular column, "Ask Dr. B." Dr. Brechtelsbauer is married and has two grown sons. He and his wife enjoy hiking, biking, camping, public radio and traveling.